Wilcox hosts football camp

OWINGS MILLS -- Daniel Wilcox is probably done playing tight end for the Baltimore Ravens, but he's not done contributing to the Baltimore community.

The free agent tight end is hosting a free youth football camp today at Cardinal Gibbons, which will include Wilcox as well as Ravens players and coaches. The camp will include agility drills, seven-on-seven passing drills as well as a Q&A and discussion of the college recruiting process.

Wilcox, who has been involved in several charity appearances in the past in Carroll County, took over the camp from former Ravens tight end Darnell Dinkins.

"I want to give these kids a chance to think outside the box," Wilcox said in a telephone interview this week. "Every kid wants to be a professional athlete, but I think they need to hear our life stories, that it wasn't easy for us, that a lot of us weren't first-round picks and we worked our butt off to get to the NFL. I think a lot of these kids need to hear that.

"I would like to tell them about the importance of recruiting and how they can get recruited to get to college. My teammates are coming in to share their life stories and also to teach them some football. As a kid, I wasn't able to meet NFL players and hang around NFL players. I want them to see we're just like them, we're not supernatural human beings. We're just regular people."

Wilcox said that he has invited several former teammates, including tight end Todd Heap, cornerback Samari Rolle, running back Willis McGahee, linebacker Tavares Gooden, middle linebacker Ray Lewis and wide receivers Derrick Mason, Mark Clayton and Demetrius Williams.

Since he wasn't retained by Baltimore when his contract expired, Wilcox has been seeking a free agent deal.

He conducted brief talks with the New York Giants, New England Patriots, Cleveland Browns and the Buffalo Bills, but nothing concrete has materialized yet. Wilcox said he has recovered from a foot injury and is ready to try out for teams.

"I feel much better than I did last year at this time," Wilcox said. "I'll be ready for this season, no matter what. Dan Wilcox will be ready and I'll make the teams see what I'm all about. When there's an opening, I'll be ready to go step in and help a team win games."

Wilcox caught five passes last season for 19 yards and two touchdowns in 13 games and one start.

For his career, which has also included stints with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New York Jets, Wilcox has caught 76 passes for 576 yards and eight touchdowns.

If he doesn't get another shot in the NFL, Wilcox said he has been preparing for his post-football life.

Wilcox is interested in television broadcasting, car dealerships and possibly opening up a gym.

"When I'm done playing, I want to be able to set myself up," Wilcox said. "I would love to have my own television show and be able to tell people how football players are different than people think. I'm interested in a bunch of things. The future is bright."

NOTE: Registration begins at 8 a.m. and the camp runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.


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